Dores for Israel, Vanderbilt’s on-campus Israel advocacy group, invited Amanda Berman to Hillel on Nov. 10 to speak about her experiences being at the intersection of “progressivism and Zionism.” Berman is the founder and executive director of Zioness, a national organization pushing for Zionist representation in activism and social justice movements.
Berman began her talk by validating the experiences of Jewish students, saying that one of her goals is to provide students with tools to help them address antisemitic situations if they arise. Her visit comes less than a week after Vanderbilt defensive backs coach Dan Jackson wrote a Facebook comment supporting Ye, who has been criticized in recent weeks for sharing antisemitic rhetoric in interviews and over social media.
“There are a lot of Jewish students that don’t have any of this [guidance], like they have a feeling and are looking for someone to put it into words and give them the language,” Berman said. “In that sense, I feel very proud to be able to do that to the extent that I am able to do that for people.”